HIP HOP MASCULINITIES
Hip Hop feminist – Joan Morgan
Joan Morgan, who refers to herself as a hip-hop feminist, reveals, "Yeah, sistas are
hurt…But the real crime isn't the name-calling, it's their failure to love us---to be our
brothers in the way that we commit ourselves to being their sistas."[
] Many black men
within hip-hop culture who battle racism and oppression themselves everyday have been
conditioned by society not to trust or love, and if they do not love themselves, it is
difficult for them to love women or anyone else in a healthy manner.
Misogynistic hip-hop does not only expose black men's pain, but it also shows the issues
that black women may want to deal with. Much of the sexual exploitation in hip-hop
culture is done with the consent and collaboration of women. A significant amount of
misogynistic hip-hop consumers are women, and hundreds of bikini-donned women
show up for the music video shoots as unpaid participants.[
] Dance clubs and backstages
of concerts are flooded with women who express willingness to do anything sexually
with a man to get drinks, money, jewelry, or just to feel privileged and wanted.
Women, especially black women, have less access to power, material wealth, and
protection and so have historically used sex (in prostitution and various other domains) as
the "bartering chip" to gain access.[
] Misogynistic ideas and practices from the past
have been passed down to today's hip-hop youth. For example, during slavery the black
woman was often forced to have sexual relations with any male (slavemasters, overseers,
and slaves) that desired her. Black women were sometimes used as breeding instruments
to produce more human property, and at other times forced to have sex to pay the for
food, the safety of her children, or to be treated less harshly on a day to day basis. They
were "paying" with their bodies as a survival strategy.
Out of this emerged the stereotype of black women as promiscuous and oversexed, and
this shaped some black women's sexual morality. Some started to look at themselves as
society viewed them, and some accepted that they had no control over their own bodies.
When trying to fit into white society after slavery and take on ascribed white gender
roles. Some black men wanted black women to have a subordinate role in the home while
some women wanted men to be the sole economic providers. They have been, for the
most part, unable to meet each other's expectations, but these same obsessions are
demonstrated in hip-hop culture. Some women want men to be the economic providers,
and use their sexual power to receive economic gain from men. While some men within
hip-hop want women to be passive and have learned to manipulate women by offering
money and power to them.
In a study done about black male/female relationships of the hip-hop generation, many